The Special Adviser to President Muhammad Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, on Tuesday 25th July, 2017 shed more light on why the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, was left out of the delegation of governors scheduled to meet with Buhari on Wednesday.
When the list became public on Monday after a story by The Punch, questions were asked on why Fayose, who had made more comments and passed criticisms on the President’s health status was left out of the delegation.
The delegation is made up of Governors Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State, Umar Gandoje of Kano State, Kashim Shettima of Borno State, Samuel Ortom of Benue State, Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State and Abiola Ajumobi of Oyo State.
Replying to questions at an interactive forum with newsmen, which was also attended by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the President, Malam Garba Shehu, and Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity in the Office of the Vice President, Laolu Akande, Adesina said the choice of those meeting Buhari was the prerogative of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum.
He said: “The selection was by the Governors’ Forum and you will see that the delegation is headed by Governor Yari, who is Chairman of that forum.
“So that question should go to the forum.”
On why the governors are visiting the President, Shehu said: “The visit is a goodwill visit and there is nothing more than that.
“I believe Nigerians in various position have yearned to go meet the President and at some point this obviously has not been permitted.
“But given the change in circumstances, you can see that is coming from London itself and from the President is welcoming.
“It is a goodwill visit.
“As a cultural people, we visit people leaving hospital and I’m sure the President himself will be delighted to see people coming from the six geopolitical zones, coming to convey the goodwill of Nigerians.”
The delegation is expected to leave on Tuesday night (today), arrive the UK in the early hours of Wednesday and have a 3pm meeting with Buhari same day.
When asked if the ministers-designate will be sworn in soon, Adesina said: “I like the word soon that you used because that is the real position. The ministers will be sworn in soon, sooner than you think it will happen.”